Published: Wed, December 06, 2017
Health | By Jay Jacobs

Could be the worst flu season

Could be the worst flu season

Heather Chamberlin got the flu vaccine during October just like she does every year.

Caudle and Rite Aid certified immunizing pharmacist Chris Altman will host a special flu-focused Facebook Live event on Wednesday, Dec. 6 at 8 p.m. ET to answer questions about the flu, address common misconceptions and provide helpful tips on how to stay healthy throughout flu season.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention releases a weekly flu report where it tracks flu activity across the country. Another reason is because strains can change over time, making the initial vaccine much less effective.

"So far there aren't that many cases here in the NY area of influenza, but there will be", he said.

"Every year, there are deaths from influenza and pneumonia, and certainly, influenza is something to be concerned about", Sweeney said.

Medical experts say however imperfect the flu shots are, current influenza vaccines remain a valuable public health tool, and it is always better to get vaccinated.

For the week ending December 2, there were 67 cases compared to 29 at the same time past year.

The virus is now widespread in four states.

So far a total of 671 cases statewide for the season, 20 of which were from Coconino County, and as you might expect reported cases are only a small percentage of the actual cases of the flu we see people suffering from within our community... Other regions are reporting regional or localized outbreaks.

"I know 100% that if you don't get a flu vaccine you will have no protection", Burstein said. This is why hand-washing is especially vital this year.

Those most at risk include the very young, the very old and those with weakened immune systems.

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